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13 Kent pub gardens to visit this summer bank holiday weekend

ByRebecca Tuffin

With this bank holiday weekend set to one of hottest yet, many will be longing for an ice-cold pint in a sunny beer garden.

So we have found some of the best Kent has to offer.

Listed below are 13 of the county's finest spots to meet with friends and indulge in good food and drink.

The Clarendon Royal Hotel, Gravesend
The Clarendon Royal Hotel, Gravesend

1. Hook and Hatchet

Church Road, Hucking, Maidstone

The Hook and Hatchet is hosting a festival this weekend
The Hook and Hatchet is hosting a festival this weekend

A bit off the beaten track, The Hook and Hatchet is well worth climbing up Hollingbourne Hill and down the winding lanes of Hucking.

The spacious pub garden backs onto a field, where campers can rest for the night.

Hosting various live music events throughout the summer, this weekend is no different.

Woodland Weekender will see performances from bands and DJs Saturday and Sunday, with a cocktail bar and burger shack also on site.

2. The Bull Inn

Linton, Maidstone

The Bull Inn, Linton
The Bull Inn, Linton

The Bull Inn is well-known locally for its stunning views of the High Weald.

The west-facing wooden decking, staggered across two levels, is a perfect spot to watch the sun set with a lager in hand.

Menu highlights include fish and chips or homemade lasagne, alongside a number of more exotic dishes.

3. The Ship Inn

Ospringe Street, Faversham

The Ship Inn, Faversham
The Ship Inn, Faversham

According to the Secret Drinker, this is Kent’s best pub garden.

The immaculate outside space is well-kept, with lots of bright flowers and neatly-pruned shrubs.

With a little background music, fresh, simple food and friendly staff, Mr Drinker was very impressed and highly recommends.

4. Chequers Inn

The Street, Smarden, Ashford

Chequers Inn, Smarden
Chequers Inn, Smarden

The Chequers Inn has recently won the Trip Advisor excellence award, and has made it into this year's AA Guide 'pick of the pubs'.

Alike to a fairytale cottage, a lily-topped pond and wild flowers surround the tavern - a peaceful spot for an afternoon drink.

Ingredients are sourced locally, along with Kentish ales brewed by Harvey’s, Sharp’s, and Fuller’s.

5. The Sun Inn

The Street, Bredgar

The Sun Inn, Bredgar, near Sittingbourne
The Sun Inn, Bredgar, near Sittingbourne

Easily accessible to both Maidstone and Sittingbourne, The Sun Inn is situated in the charming village of Bredgar.

The 16th century pub has a vast lawn, complete with picnic benches and parasols.

The summer menu features a grilled goats cheese and artichoke salad and a classic Caesar, and a gourmet sorbet selection for afters.

6. The Clarendon Royal Hotel

Royal Pier Road, Gravesend

The Clarendon Royal Hotel, Gravesend
The Clarendon Royal Hotel, Gravesend

The Admirals Bar in The Clarendon Royal opened in 2012 and has a selection of more than 200 spirits.

In front of the hotel, a huge expanse of grass overlooks the River Thames, complete with picnic benches.

The opposite of overcrowded, you can enjoy a drink here while watching ships sail by with the sun setting behind.

7. Old City Bar

Oaten Hill Place, Canterbury

Old City Bar, Canterbury
Old City Bar, Canterbury

In walking distance of the main city centre, Old City Bar is just far enough away to provide respite from the crowds.

The tavern hosts a pub quizzes, regular live music events, and barbecues throughout the summer.

Wooden decking surrounds a lawn in the beer garden, with a canopied area for those who prefer to enjoy a drink in the shade.

8. The Black Horse

Tumblefield Road, Stansted, Sevenoaks

The Black Horse, Stansted
The Black Horse, Stansted

The Black Horse's pub garden, complete with brightly-coloured flowers and purple parasols, this is a perfect bank holiday destination.

Recently rennovated, the venue offers a range of pub classics and four-legged friends are welcome.

Locally-brewed Larkin’s is on tap, alongside regular guest ales at the hostelry.

9. Bird in Hand

Dartford Road, Dartford

Bird in Hand, Dartford
Bird in Hand, Dartford

It's the Music, Ale and Gin Festival's fifth year-running at the Bird in Hand this weekend, with a barbecue and live music running each day until 6pm, Monday.

A children's climbing frame stands at the back of the garden, and the owners sometimes put up a gazebo to protect punters from the sunshine.

The lawn is framed with a paving stones and plenty of tables and chairs to sit and enjoy a Pimms or glass of lager.

10. The Old Neptune

Marine Terrace, Island Wall, Whitstable

The Old Neptune, Whitstable
The Old Neptune, Whitstable

Right on the seafront, The Old Neptune sits alone on the shingle and is one of only a handful of pubs on Britain's beaches.

The authentic white weatherboards stand out on the coastline, with several table set out front while watching the sun set over the ocean.

Located in the heart of Whitstable’s popular fishing town, the tavern offers a choice of local ales, a generous wine list and great home-cooked food.

11. The Cricketers

Crabble Avenue, Dover

The Cricketers, Dover
The Cricketers, Dover

Aptly named, The Cricketers is opposite Crabble cricket and rugby pitches, and has one of the largest beer gardens in the area.

Part of the community for more than 100 years, there is a bouncy castle, pool table and a recently refurbished function room for hire.

The tavern hosted their annual Cricketstock festival last month, with two days of live music, fancy dress and wild dancing.

12. The Walnut Tree

Warden Road, Eastchurch, Sheppey

The Walnut Tree, Eastchurch
The Walnut Tree, Eastchurch

As well as friendly staff and flavoursome food, The Walnut Tree has a well-kept garden to enjoy a relaxing drink under the sun.

The little pub is set in the village of Eastchurch and serves a range of home-cooked food including their best-selling sizzling steak.

13. The Dirty Habit

Upper Street, Hollingbourne, Maidstone

The Dirty Habit, Hollingbourne. Picture: Google street view
The Dirty Habit, Hollingbourne. Picture: Google street view

Sat upon the picturesque North Downs, The Dirty Habit is a cosy village pub with plenty of patio seating.

Vines weave above the walled garden, with two big leather sofas to sink into for when the night draws in.

A fruity cider from Aspall and Harvey's ale of Lewes can be sipped alongside a spring country platter of pickled quail eggs, smoked mackerel rillettes, garlic and pepper squid.

For more news on big brands and good places to enjoy a tasty bite, head to our Eat, Drink, Shop section

Read more: All the latest news from Kent

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